Lobbyist Wins Appeal Over N.C.’s Building Code Interpreter

CodeWatcher LP siding North Carolina

Despite concerns over ‘high-wind areas,’ construction lobbyist wins appeal over house inspections.

“Robert Privott, a top consultant for the North Carolina Home Builders Association (NCHBA), appealed an earlier decision by the North Carolina Department of Insurance (NCDOI) that stemmed, he argued, from an unclear building code. Privott, one of the top lobbyists for NCHBA, had initially asked for clarification earlier in the year.

The code in question (Section 107.1.5) covers when a contractor must have a house’s frame inspected, but it doesn’t specify whether or not the house’s exterior siding can be installed or not. The code included commentary – not an official ordinance but supplemental language that helps clarify the code, suggested the inspection should come first – but it was removed in 2016.

According to email records supplied by the North Carolina Department of Justice (DOJ), in March, Privott was informed by Clifford Isaac, the deputy commissioner for NCDOI’s engineering division, that – without the commentary – there was no reason contractors would have to wait for an inspection before installing exterior walls.

Privott, stating that different jurisdictions around the state were enforcing the code differently, asked Barry Gupton, a member of the state’s building code council and the chief code consultant, for a formal interpretation.

Gupton reversed Isaac’s decision, telling Privott frame inspection had to come first.

Privott requested an appeal form the NCDOI building code council “as soon as it can be scheduled.”

Read the full post here.